Brazil PROCESS SERVICE
Process service, also known as "service of process,” is the procedure employed to give appropriate notice of initial legal action to another party (such as a defendant), court, or administrative body to exercise jurisdiction over that person to enable that person to respond to the proceeding before the court, body, or other tribunals. Notice is furnished by delivering a set of court documents (called "process") to the person to be served; a process server performs process service.
Brazil PROCESS SERVERs
Brazil process servers serve all legal documents; however, Brazil is not a signer to the Hague Convention. Service is normally handled like methods used in the United States, although the service usually takes longer. Customs and traditions in Brazil tend to lead to a slower pace and less rigid work habits. Service sometimes may take several months, but service is generally much faster. Brazil process servers which we employ are off-duty police officers or other government officials who can, in certain cases, exercise their official capacity to complete the service.
Method of Service
Service of U.S. or Canadian process can be affected by mail, if permissible under forum court rules, by Letter Rogatory, or via local counsel. In all cases, enforcement of a judgment must be kept in mind– and it is in that light that I recommend local counsel for just about all cases.
Mail: Most U.S. courts, where service is allowable by mail, to begin with, allow mail service on foreign defendants only where the rules of the foreign jurisdiction do not prohibit it. Brazil’s Rules of Court do not specifically prohibit mail service, but they really don’t authorize it either. As such, it’s all but assured that a later attempt to enforce a judgment there will be rejected.
Letter Rogatory: an official request from the forum court for judicial assistance from a Brazilian court. Costly and time-consuming, this instrument really isn’t all it’s cracked up to be. Fortunately, Brazil is a party to the Inter-American Convention on Letters Rogatory and Additional Protocol; It also doesn’t take the form of a traditional Letter; it amounts to a series of request forms. But the documents involved must still be legalized and translated, the request has to be signed by the judge hearing the case, and it will take the Brazilian courts the better part of a year to return proof of service.
Local Counsel: Potentially costly, but not dramatically more than a Letter Rogatory, and certainly on a more solid legal footing than mail. A Brazilian attorney can ensure that local rules are followed, thus ensuring that the service manner will not give a court cause to reject an enforcement action later. The attorney petitions a local court to assign the service to a court officer, and then the attorney ensures that the officer gets the job done. Not quickly, but do, if at all possible.
Documents must be translated into the official language or one of the official languages of Brazil.
DIPLOMATIC SERVICE VIA LETTERS ROGATORY
For states that are not a party to the Hague Service Convention, diplomatic channels are generally used to serve legal documents. It is generally effected by a letter rogatory, which is a formal request to issue a judicial order from a court in the state where proceedings are underway to a court in another state. This procedure generally requires transmission of the document to be served from the originating court to the foreign ministry in the state of origin. The foreign ministry in the state of origin forwards the foreign ministry's request to the destination state. The foreign ministry then forwards the documents to the local court. The local court then makes an order to allow for the service. Once service is made, a certificate of service would then pass through the same channels in reverse. Under a somewhat more streamlined procedure, courts can sometimes forward service requests to the foreign ministry or the foreign court directly, cutting out one or more steps in the process.
The Hague Service Convention established a more simplified means for parties to effect service in other contracting states. Under the convention, each contracting state must designate a central authority to accept incoming service requests. A judicial officer who is competent to serve process in the state of origin is permitted to send a service request directly to the state's central authority where service is to be made. Upon receiving the request, the receiving state's central authority arranges for service in a manner permitted within the receiving state, typically through a local court. Once service is effected, the central authority sends a service certificate to the judicial officer who made the request.
The Hague Service Convention's main benefits over letters rogatory are that it is faster (requests generally take two to four months rather than six months to one year), it uses standardized forms that authorities should recognize in other states. It is cheaper (in most cases).
ALTERNATE METHODS OF SERVICE
The Hague Convention provides various modes of process service of documents such as by postal channel or by diplomatic/consular agents, judicial officers, officials, or other competent persons. These provisions are covered under Articles 8 to 10 and may or not be allowed by member countries as a valid mode of serving the documents in their territory. The method of serving the documents through the Central Agency (Article 5) is not optional but is binding on all the member countries. The Central Agency does the services usually take a long time: 4 to 12 months. The convention gives relief to the litigants if they have not received a service certificate or delivery from the Central Agency even after waiting for six months. In such cases, the Court may consider that a reasonable time has elapsed, giving its judgment. In case of urgency, the court may issue a provisional order or protective measure even before the six-month waiting period.
SERVICE BY MAIL
Service by mail is possible only in states that have not objected to that method under Article 10(a) of the convention and if the jurisdiction where
the court case that takes place allows it under its applicable law.
Documents can be faxed (800)-296-0115, emailed email@example.com, mailed 590 Madison Avenue, 21 Floor, New York, New York 10022, or dropped off at any of our locations. We do require pre-payment and accept all major credit and debit cards. Once payment is processed, your sales receipt is immediately emailed for your records.
Drop-offs must call and make an appointment to be added to building security to permit access to our office. Documents for service must be in a sealed envelope with payment in the form of a money order or attorney check (WE DO NOT ACCEPT CASH) payable to UNDISPUTED LEGAL INC. Our receptionist receives all documents.
New York: (212) 203-8001 – 590 Madison Avenue, 21st Floor, New York, New York 10022
Brooklyn: (347) 983-5436 – 300 Cadman Plaza West, 12th Floor, Brooklyn, New York 11201
Queens: (646) 357-3005 – 118-35 Queens Blvd, Suite 400, Forest Hills, New York 11375
Long Island: (516) 208-4577 – 626 RXR Plaza, 6th Floor, Uniondale, New York 11556
Westchester: (914) 414-0877 – 50 Main Street, 10th Floor, White Plains, New York 10606
Connecticut: (203) 489-2940 – 500 West Putnam Avenue, Suite 400, Greenwich, CT 06830
New Jersey: (201) 630-0114 - 101 Hudson Street, 21 Floor, Jersey City, NJ 07302
What Should You Do Next?
Pick up the phone and call (212) 203-8001 or click the service you want to purchase. Our dedicated team of professionals is ready to assist you. We can handle all of your process service needs; no job is too small or too large!
Contact us for more information about our process serving agency. We are ready to provide service of process to all of our clients globally from our offices in New York, Brooklyn, Queens, Long Island, Westchester, New Jersey, and Connecticut.
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